AUGUSTA — The Board of Education may extend the term of the interim superintendent for another two school years.

James Anastasio, the former principal of Cony High School, has served as interim superintendent since Cornelia Brown, former superintendent, left for a new job Jan. 1.

Wednesday, the Board of Education meets to consider appointing Anastasio to remain as interim superintendent until June of 2015.

“They asked if I’d extend (his term as interim) for two years,” Anastasio said of board members. “Absolutely. I’m ecstatic they’d put that faith in me.”

The move would give the board more time to seek the elimination of a requirement, in the Augusta City Charter, that the superintendent of schools reside in the city.

Board members have said the residency requirement hindered their search for a new superintendent, and said they heard some potential candidates for the job didn’t apply because they didn’t want to relocate.

Legislation that would have allowed local school boards to override superintendent residency requirements was vetoed by Gov. Paul LePage this year.

Changing the city charter to remove the residency requirement would require a citywide vote. No such vote is currently scheduled.

Anastasio said he was not aware of any limits on the length of time superintendents are allowed to serve in an interim role.

He said extending his interim stint until June of 2015 would provide the board with time to seek to eliminate the residency requirement and, then, whether that effort fails or succeeds, react and make a decision about how to proceed.

When Anastasio, a Gardiner resident, was first hired as interim, he expressed interest in winning the job long-term. He said Tuesday he remains interested in the position.

“The role is challenging and exciting and I think I would continue in that role if the opportunity presented itself,” he said.

Board members meet Wednesday to consider the proposal, and several other items of school business, at 7 in council chambers at Augusta City Center.

Keith Edwards — 621-5647
[email protected]

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